History certainly gives Chelsea FC the edge in their UEFA Champions League quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain. Not only did the English club win 3-0 away and draw 0-0 at home to the French team in the 2004/05 group stage – their only past meetings – but they have won six of their eight last-eight ties in the competition compared with Paris's one victory and one loss. Even so, both sides agreed there would be little to separate the current leaders of the English and French leagues.
Laurent Blanc, Paris coach
Chelsea are a team that we know – we often watch them in the Premier League with their well-known international players. We knew the draw would provide us with a great team, so it's Chelsea. We will prepare well for this tie. We still have a little time. Hosting the return leg is a small advantage for Chelsea, so it will be necessary for us to make the difference at home. We'll have to be steady defensively and score goals at Parc des Princes.
Thiago Silva, Paris captain and defender
I'm happy because Chelsea have many Brazilian players [David Luiz, Ramires, Oscar and Willian]. I look forward to meeting them. It will be a great tie between two great clubs and I hope that, unlike last season, we will reach the semi-finals. The quarter-finals are all difficult and travel for the second leg won't be a crucial factor.
Ron Gourlay, Chelsea chief executive
It is a massive game. We have a good balance between young and experienced players and, in our eye, the top coach in the world. We have a top-quality side but we know we'll be playing a Paris Saint-Germain side that has some big individual players.
It's a fantastic tie. It was always going to be a difficult game no matter which way it went, when you look at the sides who are in the quarter finals: top, top drawer. But it's an interesting one, because when José Mourinho, our manager, first joined the club, his very first Champions League game was against Paris Saint-Germain. We won that evening, so hopefully we can do the same again. But it will be very, very difficult; they're doing fantastically well domestically and they're a top, top side.
If you look at the statistics, I think the percentages of rate of success is higher with the team who plays away first. But I don't think it means anything going into this, [with] the quality of both sides. It will be [a] fantastic two games, great for the fans and everyone involved.
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